Chicoine replaces Peggy Gordon Miller, who retires at the end of the year after serving SDSU as its president since 1998.
"We were gratified by the strong pool of candidates in this search process, and are happy to welcome Dr. Chicoine back to South Dakota," said Regent Terry Baloun, chair of the search committee. "Dr. Chicoine's administrative experience, coupled with his academic grounding in agriculture and business, were strong factors in his selection. We are particularly pleased to have someone with his proven experience in technology transfer and economic development to guide this emerging emphasis in public higher education and at SDSU."
Chicoine, as vice president for technology and economic development, is the senior officer and adviser to the University of Illinois president and Board of Trustees on technology commercialization and economic development. In that role, Chicoine oversees the university's technology licensing offices, its start-up business and early-stage venture-investing limited liability corporation, and its research park and incubator operations. On July 1, he also began serving as the interim vice president for academic affairs, working with the president, trustees, and the leadership of the three Illinois campuses on budget and academic matters.
"My wife, Marcia, also a SDSU grad, and I are very excited about the opportunity to serve as president of SDSU. Few have this chance to return to their alma mater as president," Chicoine said. "I appreciate the hard work of the search committee, their confidence and trust, and that of the regents. This is an exciting time for SDSU, for students, faculty and stakeholders, and the state. Marcia and I really look forward to returning to South Dakota and to SDSU.
"SDSU is a university on the move. It has a legacy of service for 125 years," Chicoine continued. "Much has been achieved under the leadership of President Miller and the regents. Now is the time to build on this momentum, to be an even more powerful gateway to opportunity for students and their families, and to help build a prosperous future for the state and region."
Chicoine said, "These are exciting and challenging times for higher education in America. Marcia and I welcome this opportunity to serve SDSU, its students, and faculty. We hope to fulfill their expectations, as well as the high expectations leaders across South Dakota have, not just for SDSU but, for all of higher education."
Chicoine currently works across all three University of Illinois campuses – Chicago, Springfield, and Urbana-Champaign, with a total enrollment of more than 70,000 students and a budget of $3.8 billion. He previously served as dean of the Urbana-Champaign campus College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences, head of the Department of Agricultural Economics, and has been on the agricultural economics faculty since 1979. He has held a joint appointment in the university's Institute for Government and Public Affairs since 1984. For 11 years he was faculty athletic representative to the Big Ten Conference and the NCAA for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Chicoine is an accomplished applied economics scholar, with more than 100 scholarly publications earning many awards and recognitions. He is a member of the Governor of Illinois' Council of Economic Advisors, which guides the annual revenue forecasts for the state of Illinois. He has frequently consulted and advised on taxes, farmland property tax assessments, and other public finance, rural, and regional economic development issues. He is also a member of the board of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce and the Board of Governors for Argonne National Laboratory.
Chicoine is a member of the board of trustees of the Chicago-based Farm Foundation and is a trustee of Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana, IL, serving as its vice chair. He has served as a member of the board of the John Warner Bank, Clinton, IL, and as a board member of the Champaign County Community Foundation.
In addition to his agribusiness degree from SDSU, Chicoine holds master's degrees in economics from Western Illinois University and in agricultural economics from the University of Delaware. His Ph.D. in agricultural economics is from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
His wife, Marcia, is a native of Volga. The Chicoines have a son who is married and living in Chicago. Chicoine's father, Roland, is a retired farmer from Elk Point who served 18 years in the South Dakota Legislature and attended SDSU prior to World War II. Chicoine's youngest brother, Brian, and his wife, Terri, operate the Chicoine family farm at Elk Point
Chicoine has seven siblings, all of whom attended SDSU, with five completing their bachelor's degrees at State. His sister, Nichole Klein of White, is an associate professor of economics at SDSU. Her husband, Joe Klein, is also an alumnus and a veterinarian at White. In 1986, SDSU honored the Roland and Evelyn Chicoine family by naming them the SDSU Family of the Year.